We spent a day on the water taking a catamaran to visit the northern islands of Mauritius. We organised a driver to go to Grand Bay and return at the end of the day. The drive took about one hour from Flic en Flac. Grand Bay is a lovely place with a harbour full of boats.

The town is much more touristy and busy than Flic en Flac but handy for arranging tours and shopping. A very popular destination for the tourists.

The driver wanted to be paid for the return trip so we agreed to pay him for half the trip and were assured that someone would be here to pick us up even if it wasn’t him.

Had time for a lovely cup of coffee while checking out all the boats in the the harbour before leaving for our cruise.

Boarded the boat and after a speil everyone was asked to wear life jackets – new regulations. The islands to the north of Mauritius are in the ‘open sea’ unlike our earlier trip to Ille aux Cerfs which is sheltered by reef.

We set off for the hour and a half trip to Ilot Gabriel and Ile Le Plate, passing the island of Coin de Mire. We sat on the front of the boat the whole way and only got caught by a couple of waves. The water was an amazing dark blue colour very clean and very deep.

We moored with all the other catamarans and were ferried in a rubber dingy to the island to spend time snorkeling and swimming.

The water was so clear and the sand powdery white. The coral was nice with some fish darting about. There are no shops or anything established on the island which is nice.

There were a lot of the local birds called Paille en Queue flying about. White birds with a very long tail feather. Apparently there is also a red variety on the opposite island (Le Plate/Flat island).

After about an hour swimming we were transported back to our boat for a delicious lunch of salads and barbecued fish and chicken all served with a selection of drinks.

The cruises all run to a similar formula, boat trip, lunch cooked on board and a bit of singing dancing on the way home!

We all relaxed and listened to music on the cruise back to Grand Bay.

Not surprised that a driver wasn’t there. We waited a while then rang ‘the organiser’ (Pays to have a local sim card) and one was quickly arranged to take us home.

Later on we went down to our local beach for some street/beach food for a dinner snack and to watch the sunset on another beautiful day.

A lovely way to spend our last full day in Mauritius – we have been very lucky with great weather.